An Introduction to Chinese Orchid Paintings

  • Patrick I. Siu
Part of the Springer Protocols Handbooks book series (SPH)


Orchids have been painted by artists throughout centuries. They are often associated with elegance, virtues and integrity. Orchids are one of the most popular topics for Chinese painting. Two main methods of painting orchids are discussed and illustrated in this chapter, i.e. gongbi painting (detailed painting) which requires high artistic skill and literati painting (freestyle painting) which requires more calligraphic skill instead. Literati painting gives artists more freedom to express themselves through the vivid brushstroke despite the fact that the final products may deviate a lot from the real specimens. Painting the orchids gives fun, satisfaction and intellectual aspirations to artists, amateurs and even beginners.

Key words

Cymbidium Chinese painting Gongbi painting Literati painting 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Patrick I. Siu
    • 1
  1. 1.WilloughbyAustralia

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